An aspiring and successful actor, Che is deeply immersed in the Rochester cultural scene. So much so, we’ve named him Che of The Town!
Exclusively for Talker, Che has solicited and is conducting interviews from about 50 Rochestarians working in a diversity of creative fields.
For the full series, see Che of The Town: Interviews
Che is a proud graduate of the School of the Art and has featured many SOTA alums, including.Britton Bradford, Kayoz Fortune, Ajani Jeffries, Marguerite Frarey, Willie “El Mongoose” Monroe Jr., Willis Ajamu Brooks , James Kegler , Taye Diggs and Evalyn Gleason.
When I did some substitute teaching in the RCSD, SOTA was my favorite destination. I remember John Gabrielle preparing his choir for the Lilac Festival and then watching their impressive performance in Highland Park. See No highly effective teachers at SOTA. Something is not right.
Once, I helped the Tech Crew strike down the set they had deftly created for the musical Shrek. That experience became The Unsung Heroes . . . Behind the Scenes at the School of the Arts.
In this highlight we turn our attention to Ed Myers an extraordinarily gifted director, educator, family man and artist. Ed embodies the qualities of a leader and prominent figure in our community.
What stands out the most about Ed is his passion and individualism. I worked with Ed in my junior year at the School of the Arts, in his directorial debut in the production of A Company of Wayward Saints, written by George Herman.
I still hold dear the lessons he taught throughout the production, His style of directing was simultaneously unorthodox and extremely refreshing. He instilled the sentiment in me to think outside of the box and not be afraid to explore the dark depths of a character.
Ed has a leader/protector side to him that is undeniable and that quality is what draws his students in, under his direction, a lot of us were able to identify, embrace and shine through our insecurities. We applaud you Ed, keep on being the leader and inspiration that you are.
Tell us a little about yourself, where you are from, grew up, what H.S./College you attended etc.
I am originally from Liverpool, NY and moved to Rochester in 2001. I went to Liverpool High School and graduated in 1994. I then attended SUNY Cortland and majored in Theatre/Performance.
What inspired you to be an artist/entertainer/teacher? Early experiences worth sharing?
I have always loved theatre and my first performance and was in a play in 4th grade. I played the lead, John, in an elementary school musical called “Freedom Bound.” From that point on, I knew I wanted to be on stage. I auditioned for every show from that point and through college. I played High School basketball but that quickly got in the way of my artistic ambitions.
Talk about a time where you have faced adversity/conflict and have triumphed.
As a favor, my theatre department chair got me an audition for a professional theatre company when I was only a sophomore. I bombed the audition and the producing director told me as much. I told myself that I would learn from my mistakes and audition again and get a job there. My senior year in college, I auditioned again as well as applied for a carpenter position for the summer. I got both jobs! I was a children’s theatre performer during the school year and ultimately became the Technical Director for the summer stock season. I worked at the Merry Go Round Playhouse for 4 years as an actor, director, set designer, Master carpenter, Technical Director and company manager.
What do you believe sets you apart from other artists/entertainers/teacher?
I believe I have a strong passion for the arts. I have seen the good it can do for people of all walks of life. I toured New York State performing and teaching theatre for people of all ages and many people had never seen a play of any kind. I also have significant knowledge in every aspect of theatre from technical to performance as well as teaching theatre to students of any age.
Do you have other interests or hobbies?
Any projects you have out or currently working on?
Where would you like to see yourself in 5 years?
I would like to see myself continuing to direct and teach Theatre Technology at Rochester’s School of the Arts. We have an amazing school with amazingly talented students.
What advice can you give to aspiring artists/entertainers/teacher?
Love what you do. Everyday. Never stop doing it. You will inspire people around you. Share your love and passion for the arts and it will spread like wildfire.
How can we follow along in your journey? Social media?
Eeeewwwww…… Social media…. If you want to follow me on my “journey”, support local artists. Help a child achieve their goals. Volunteer at your church or community center. Bring a child to a musical.